The mini-Holland New Malden to Raynes Park scheme could be "killed off" after Thames Water demanded almost the entire budget to assess the water pipes that run under the link.

Surrey Comet:

Thames Water owns the land on the proposed New Malden and Raynes Park link- the second phase of Kingston’s £33m TfL-funded project.

The company is asking for more than £500,000 from the council to check the impact the works would have on its pipes plus £1,000 per metre to fix potential defects.

The total figure could be as much as £1.87m - almost the entire £1.9m budgeted for the project.

Councillor Richard Hudson, lead member for capital, projects and contracts, said the project could not go ahead if they could not come to an agreement with Thames Water.

He said: "To say I am extremely angry is an understatement. Thames Water want to dig six bore holes at a cost of £30,000 each to see if their pipes need repairs.

"They have told us that the worst case scenario they might want up to £1.87m from us and honestly that would just kill the scheme."

Public consultation on the New Malden link was due to start on June 20 however this has had to be pushed back after concerns from Thames Water.

Running underneath the proposed greenway site alongside the railway under the A3 dual carriageway are four major pressurised water pipes, known as the New Malden Pipe Track.

The devastation that can occur if one of these pipes bursts was seen on June 19, when New Malden town centre was completely flooded after a leak.

Surrey Comet:

New Malden flooded after a pipe burst on June 19

Opposition leader Liz Green agreed with Coun Hudson’s comments and accused Thames Water of "taking the mickey."

She said: "Assessing whether our work might affect their pipes is fair enough but I don’t think it is our job to fix them if they are faulty.

"We can’t let them take the mickey and get us to pay for work they should be doing."

A crisis meeting between Thames Water, Kingston Council and London cycling commisioner Andrew Gilligan is due to take place on July 20.

A spokeswoman for Thames Water said: "As a business that strives to operate in the most sustainable way possible, we welcome the idea of a new cycle route and will do all we can to keep costs to a minimum.

"However, it’s equally important to make sure it doesn’t have a negative impact on the pipes underground, as they’re a vital part of the network which supplies drinking water to thousands of homes and businesses.

"We look to find a solution that’s in the best interests of everyone."